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Sonoran Governor Claudia Pavlovich Arellano met with University of Arizona President Robert C. Robbins and other university representatives in September to discuss a new partnership.

Sonoran Students Set to Earn Interest-Free Mining Engineering Degrees

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Sonoran Students Set to Earn Interest-Free Mining Engineering Degrees

Oct. 14, 2020
University of Arizona program is preparing students in Mexico for a global workforce.

Mineral deposits don’t stop at borders, and neither does a mining engineering education. Perhaps nowhere is that more apparent than along the Arizona-Mexico border.

Arizona is No. 1 in copper production and metal mining in the United States, and neighboring Mexican state of Sonora is the country’s leading mining state. In fact, some of the world’s largest copper deposits are in the Arizona-Sonora megaregion.

Thanks to a recently established initiative, students in the State of Sonora -- home to Mexico's largest, and oldest, open pit copper mine in the city of Cananea -- can get interest-free loans to pursue the online master’s degree in mining, geological and geophysical engineering at the University of Arizona. The first 20 students are set to start in January 2021.

“Between Arizona and Sonora, we’re sitting in one of the most active mining regions in the world,” said Justin Dutram, assistant vice president of Mexico and Latin American Initiatives at Arizona Global. “By working together, we can do our part to train the next generation of talent for the mining sector, who are prepared for mining in the age of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Partnering with the state of Sonora also makes the university more competitive globally.”

The university’s Department of Mining & Geological Engineering is known for its collaborative efforts and focus on sustainability. For example, the Tailings Center of Excellence, established recently in partnership with Colorado State University and the Colorado School of Mines, addresses sustainable handling of mine waste.

The QS World University Rankings places the mining engineering program at third in the United States and 20th in the world. With research focusing on the latest technology for mining safety and efficiency, its longstanding ties to the global mining industry and very own underground mine, the University of Arizona is a popular destination for mining engineering students at all levels.

“This agreement is an important development in furthering bilateral ties between the states of Sonora and Arizona,” said Moe Momayez, interim department head and David & Edith Lowell Chair in Mining and Geological Engineering. “The faculty in the Department of Mining and Geological Engineering are proud to have this opportunity to share our combined expertise and help train the next generation of mining engineers, both nationally and internationally.”